What If London Eliminated Social Housing? Netflix’s The Kitchen Imagines The Repercussions

By Olivia Emily

6 months ago

This dystopian film is coming to Netflix very soon

Twenty-two percent of London housing is social housing – but what if this was eliminated? This is the starting point of Netflix’s brand new film, The Kitchen, which imagines a dramatic dystopian fall-out, centred on one community that refuses to go down quietly.

The Kitchen: Inside Netflix’s Dystopian London

Kane Robinson as Izi on a motorcydle beside Jedaiah Bannerman as Benji in The Kitchen

The Kitchen. (L to R) Kane Robinson as Izi, Jedaiah Bannerman as Benji in The Kitchen. Courtesy of Netflix © 2023

The Kitchen is a whopping 10 years in the making, with Kibwe Tavares, Daniel Kaluuya and Daniel Emmerson whipping up the idea in a barbershop in 2014. In 2016, the script was selected for Sundance’s prestigious Screenwriting and Directing Lab, but it wasn’t until 2022 that production commenced.

It’s both Tavares and Kaluuya’s directorial debut, the latter being best known for his roles in Skins, Black Mirror, Get Out, Black Panther and Nope. At the fore of The Kitchen, however, is Kane Robinson, who is best known for his role as Sully in the original Top Boy series as well as its Netflix reboot.

Teenage boys on motorbikes surrounded by graffiti in The Kitchen

© Netflix

What Is The Kitchen About?

London 2044: all forms of social housing have been eradicated, and the chasm between rich and poor has never been starker. The city’s working classes have been forced to the edges of the city in temporary accommodation, and Izi (Kane Robinson) is desperate to get out. He lives in The Kitchen of the film’s title, the largest of the slums housing residents who refuse to leave their homes. Here he meets Benji (Jedaiah Bannerman), a 12-year-old boy who has lost his mother, and is searching for a family. Together, they battle to survive their unjust present while grappling for a better future.

Who Stars?

  • Kane Robinson as Izi
  • Jedaiah Bannerman as Benji
  • Hope Ikpoku Jr as Staples
  • Teija Kabs as Ruby
  • Demmy Ladipo as Jase
  • Cristale as Lianne
  • BackRoad Gee as Kamale
  • Dani Moseley as Ruby’s mum
  • Harvey Quinn as The Narrator
  • Henry Lawfull as Cronik
  • Lola-Rose Maxwell as Fiona
  • Richie Lawrie as Harry
  • Alan Asaad as Oozie
  • Fiona Marr as Amy
  • Rasaq Kukoyi as Arinze
  • Ian Wright as Lord Kitchener

Where Was It Filmed?

The Kitchen was filmed entirely in London and Paris, specifically in Bethnal Green. Also, from our first look images, it looks like the Barbican Conservatory makes an appearance – a classic choice for retro futuristic and dystopian films, thanks to its iconic Brutalism.

A man and a boy stood in an overgrown conservatory

The Barbican Conservatory as seen in The Kitchen. © Netflix

Is There A Trailer?

Yes, and you can watch it below.

Release Date

The Kitchen had a limited cinema release on 12 January 2024, after premiering at the BFI London Film Festival in October 2023. It will be released digitally on 19 January 2024 on Netflix.

Where Is It Streaming?

The Kitchen will stream exclusively on Netflix from 19 January 2024.